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Sunday 28 November 2010
I just returned from the latest University of Georgia vs Georgia Tech football game. Kickoff was at 7:45 PM (temperature: 43°!), but Trey and I did not reach the car to begin the return trip from Athens until 12:08 AM Sunday morning. Needless to say, Trey slept in the warm car on the way home, waking only briefly to say "that was one big garage." I still have no idea what that meant.
The Bulldogs should send a nice thank you note to Tech, because this 42-34 victory was a gift. The UGA defense looked worse than usual, which is really saying something. The UGA offense fumbled early and often. Quarterback Murry's fourth down fumble in the fourth quarter was really our entire season in a microcosm. Tech ran on us at will all game long, but Tech botched the job late with a missed extra point (kicker's fault) followed by a panicked change in game plan (coach's fault). Thanks, Paul Johnson. You probably saved Mark Richt's job for another year by giving us our 6th win and making us bowl eligible. I suspect that you must be hoping that we will return the favor in a few years.
Outgoing Governor Sonny Perdue was at the game. His skybox was illuminated for the duration of the game so that the crowd could look up and watch him watching the game. The stadium PA announcer gleefully reminded the UGA and Tech fans in attendance that including Governor-elect Nathan Deal, the last 5 Georgia governors have all been UGA graduates.
True story: With 1:38 remaining in the game and UGA ahead by 1 point (re: botched PAT), the Georgia Tech defense intentionally allows UGA running back Washaun Ealey to run for 20 yards into the end zone. Had Ealey simply fallen down on the ground after passing the first down marker, UGA would have been able to run out the clock and win the game, Tech having already used its final timeout. For many, many minutes afterwords, Trey grumbled about the selfish play by Ealey and the poor coaching by UGA in selecting a running back who passed up the win for personal glory. As Trey and I walked out of the stadium in the post-game crowd, a young boy looked up at his father and spontaneously lamented, "if Ealey had just fallen down on the ground when he passed the first down marker, we would have won that game right there!" The fact that the situation overlooked by Georgia's players and coaches was self-evident to a little boy of no more than 10 cheered Trey right up.
In the interest of full disclosure, I must admit that I celebrated the Ealey touchdown alongside most of the crowd while Trey scowled. Sure, I had already figured that a UGA victory was practically guaranteed with a UGA first down, but I guess I forgot in the momentary excitement. What can I say? I'm just a sucker for scoring easy points against arch-rival Tech. Go Dawgs!